`In this remarkably economical, clear and informed book, Mike Howe... sets about unravelling the formidable semantic, logical and empirical knots into which IQ testers and their supporters have tied themselves.... Howe suggests that we have, for decades, been asking the wrong kinds of questions. He points to the number of alternative, theoretically richer, views of human intelligence that don't reduce all to a single dimension... this is rendered with an easy, readable style which assumes no previous technical knowledge' - British Journal of Educational Psychology In this provocative and accessible book, Michael Howe exposes serious flaws in our most widely accepted beliefs about intelligence. He shows that cr

Doubtful Beginnings
Doubtful beginnings

It began innocently enough, with a French psychologist named Alfred Binet. In 1904 Binet was asked to devise a diagnostic instrument for differentiating between schoolchildren of normal ability and pupils who were too far below the average to profit from the usual school curriculum, and therefore better suited to special schooling. Binet knew of the largely unsuccessful recent efforts of a number of individuals, including Charles Darwin's cousin Francis Galton, to construct tests that would assess individuals' mental capacities. He had already made some tentative attempts himself.

The test that Binet and his student Theodore Simon constructed was published in 1905. It contained 30 items requiring mental tasks of various kinds to be performed. These included easy ones that required children to do ...

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